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COURT OF APPEAL, FOURTH APPELLATE DISTRICT - page 20 / 29

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Although the storage fee regulation of section 22658, subdivision (i)(2) does not fall within the FAAAA's safety exception, we conclude it does fall within the nonconsensual towing exception of 49 U.S.C. section 14501(c)(2)(C).  That exception, as stated above, permits the state to enact laws or regulations "relating to the price of for-hire motor vehicle transportation by a tow truck, if such transportation is performed without the prior written consent or authorization of the owner or operator of the motor vehicle."  The term "transportation" is defined in the FAAAA as including "(A) a motor vehicle . . . or equipment of any kind . . . related to the movement of passengers or property, or both . . . ; and [¶] (B) services related to that movement, including . . . storage, handling, packing, unpacking, and interchange of passengers and property."  (49 U.S.C. § 13102(21)(B), italics added; Independent Towers, supra, 350 F.3d at p. 931,

fn. 4; Ace Auto Body & Towing, Ltd. v. City of New York, supra, 171 F.3d at p. 771.)

Relying on the Ninth Circuit's decision in Independent Towers, supra, 350 F.3d 925, as well as Berry, supra, 7 Cal.App.4th 587, plaintiff argues the storage fee limitation of section 22658, subdivision (i) should easily be found to relate to the price of nonconsensual tows, because the obvious purpose of the entire regulatory scheme of section 22658 is to set out rules that apply when a property owner, as opposed to the vehicle owner, requests that a vehicle be towed.  Plaintiff points to the fact the towing regulations at issue are contained within chapter 10 of division 11 of the Vehicle Code, pertaining to "Removal of Parked and Abandoned Vehicles," thus assertedly showing that all of the regulations are "devoted to regulating the methods and prices that apply to

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